SPRINGFIELD, NJ - This year Jonathan Dayton senior Marinna Kwinta was Springfield’s honoree at the National Women’s and Girl’s Sports Day. She learned about the award in December from the Director of Athletics, Lance Jacobs.
She was honored at the annual National Girls and Women in Sports Day (NGWSD) celebration, which recognized the exceptional scholastic and collegiate athletic accomplishments of female athletes across New Jersey. The awards luncheon was hosted by Seton Hall University and was sponsored by NJSIAA (New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association) in late January. She was accompanied by her parents along with her coach Pamela De La Llave.
Marinna Kwinta is a four year varsity participant in volleyball and softball. She is one of the six seniors on the volleyball team and one of the three on the softball team. On the girls varsity volleyball team she is the outside hitter and on the softball team she plays center field. She was co-captain of last year’s volleyball team and was the captain of this year’s team.
She has experienced the ups and downs of sports. For instance, this year’s volleyball team did not match the expectations that were set from the performance of last year’s team, which had a record of 15-8. For the softball team, hopes are high as last year’s team made it to the Sectional Final, the first time a Dayton team accomplished that. The Bulldogs lost to Roselle Park 4-3 in the final game. Marinna was also a first team All Group 1 selection. Her batting average last year was .605.
Kwinta also participates in other school activities. She said, “The high school offers so many opportunities that students can take part it in order to be a well rounded individual." One of the other things she likes about the high school is "...how the faculty and administration encourage students to get to know each other and have lots of friends, which is done in part through friend groups with a focus on what students have in common.”
Outside of sports Marinna Kwinta maintains a 3.53 GPA. Kwinta has been on Student Council all four years of high school. This year and last she held the position of Vice President. In her sophomore year she served as Secretary and in her freshman year she was a representative. One of the responsibilities of the student government is to raise money for their class.
Next year she will be going to college. She is not sure where yet but she does have choices. When she finishes college she would like to be an elementary school teacher with a minor in special education. JDHS has already given her some experience through its “Tomorrow’s Teachers” program. In the offered class, she was able to go to one of the elementary school’s and observe the classroom and additionally had the opportunity to prepare and teach a lesson to a fourth grade class. Her interest in special education developed because she has an autistic cousin.
She has lived in Springfield all of her life. Before attending JDHS, she attended Pre-K through eighth grade at St. James the Apostle School in Springfield. She is the oldest of three, a brother – Tyler and a sister – Kennedy. Her parents are Loviisa and Jahn. Loviisa is half Finnish and half Indian, while Jahn is 100% Polish. They are very proud of Marinna and all of her accomplishments at JDHS.
About National Girls & Women in Sports Day (NGWSD)
NGWSD began in 1987 as a special day in our nation’s capital to recognize women’s sports. The day united premiere organizations and elite female athletes to bring national attention to the promise of girls and women in sports. In 1987, NGWSD also served as a remembrance of Olympic volleyball player, Flo Hyman, for her athletic achievements and dedication to promoting equality for women’s sports; Hyman died of Marfan’s Syndrome in 1986. NGWSD has since evolved into an event to acknowledge the accomplishments of female athletes, the positive influence of sports participation and the continuing struggle for equality for women in sports.
NGWSD is celebrated annually across all 50 states with community-based events, award ceremonies and other celebratory activities. NGWSD is organized by the members of the National Girls & Women in Sports Day Coalition. Champion women athletes have also contributed to annual NGWSD activities. For more information, please visit: www.NGWSD.org.
The following picture is of Marinna and her parents.